Optimism trumps cynicism after break-in over Christmas break

The best part about going on a break is the chance to get away from reality. Instead of having to attend some bothersome event, I finally get a chance to go back home to Cleveland and do one of my favorite things – sleep.
Over the last break, however, reality decided to give me a wake-up call.
A couple days after Christmas, I received a voice mail from my landlord explaining that my house in Erie had been broken into. I soon ventured back to Erie to assess the situation.

Alex "Q" Bieler, assistant sports editor

I got off fairly easily, but my one roommate didn’t get so lucky. Whoever absconded with our belongings ended up taking his 42-inch TV as well as a couple of gaming consoles and his considerable game collection.
A pair of my roommate’s DVD players, as well as the entirety of our movie collection in the living room (the majority of which was mine) was taken – with the exception of Fargo, oddly enough.
On the bright side, this narrows our search for the criminals to people who aren’t big fans of earlier Coen Brothers movies.
All joking aside, the event seemed to be the exclamation point on what seemed like a very long year. Like many others out there, I had to deal with a multitude of valleys that the landscape of life brings. Ultimately, however, I did come to a conclusion.
Stuff happens.
Does it suck that my house got broken into? Yes. Does it seem unfair that three students attempting to pay for college and housing had their possessions taken from them? Most certainly. Can you prevent every bad thing from happening? Not a chance.
No matter how much you can try to safeguard your life, something will happen. It may sound depressing, but everyone goes through it. It’s a part of life.
Not everything is going to be good and it can be easy to become cynical. I’m at the age where I’m walking my own path. There may be times that I’m going to fall, but that doesn’t mean I should stop moving forward.
Every so often, though, I need a reminder. Last year, Conan O’Brien, even as he hosted his last episode of “The Tonight Show,” provided just that:
“I hate cynicism; for the record it’s my least favorite quality, it doesn’t lead anywhere. Nobody in life gets exactly what they thought they were going to get. But if you work really hard and you’re kind, amazing things will happen.”
I must blame my mom for my optimism. She always saw the good in people. We tell her that she’s way too nice for her own good (what a fault), but because of that, I truly believe that there is goodness out there. All cynicism does is blindfold you from seeing the bright spots in life.
Somebody may have broken into my house, but I won’t let them steal my spirit.

ALEX BIELER
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